A DOCUMENTARY following the life of a County Durham tenant hill farming family has hit the States.

Addicted to Sheep, which follows the lives of Teesdale sheep farmers Tom and Kay Hutchinson and their children Hetty, Esme and Jack, was shown at the Ashland Independent Film Festival, in Oregon, at the weekend.

Magali Pettier, of Provenance Films, was given unrestricted access to the family on their farm near Middleton-in-Teesdale, from June 2010 to September 2011, where she captured 62 hours of footage of them and their flock of pedigree Swaledale sheep as they battled through the seasons.

Ms Pettier then teamed up with Jan Cawood, of Tin Man Films, to produce the independent documentary, after £9,000 was raised through a successful crowd-funding campaign.

And after its initial premiere in Durham last February, the film has been shown in multiple venues across the UK, even featuring in the BBC One show, Countryfile.

“The screening went very well,” Ms Pettier said.

“I relaxed a bit when I saw the queue outside the venue and in the end we had over 400 people, festival goers, wool lovers and farmers who came to see the film.

“It was great to hear people laugh in the right places!”

She added: “Following the Q&A screening we had good feedback. A lovely man who is from Halifax, England but has lived in Oregon for a long time was very touched by the authenticity of the film and even had some tears in his eyes. It was a very touching moment for us all.

“We did have a few people suggesting we add subtitles though if we are to take the film further to the American market so watch this space.”